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The Resurrection and New Life

 
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Prayer-Soldier
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 2:35 pm    Post subject: The Resurrection and New Life Reply with quote

The Resurrection and New Life

Scripture:


You know the word which has been published through all Judea: for it began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached. Jesus of Nazareth: how God anointed him with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all that were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him. And we are witnesses of all things that he did in the land of the Jews and in Jerusalem: whom they killed, hanging him upon a tree. Him God raised up the third day and gave him to be made manifest, not to all the people, but to witnesses preordained by God, even to us, who did eat and drink with him, after he arose again from the dead. And he commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that it is he who was appointed by God to be judge of the living and of the dead. To him all the prophets give testimony, that by his name all receive remission of sins, who believe in him. (Acts 10:34A, 37-43)

Therefore if you be risen with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is sitting at the right hand of God. Mind the things that are above, not the things that are upon the earth. For you are dead: and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ shall appear, who is your life, then you also shall appear with him in glory. (Colossians 3:1-4)

And on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalen comes early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulcher: and she saw the stone taken away from the sepulcher. She ran therefore and comes to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved and said to them: They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulcher: and we know not where they have laid him. Peter therefore went out, and the other disciple: and they came to the sepulcher. And they both ran together: and that other disciple did outrun Peter and came first to the sepulcher. And when he stooped down, he saw the linen cloths lying: but yet he went not in. Then comes Simon Peter, following him, and went into the sepulcher: and saw the linen cloths lying, and the napkin that had been about his head, not lying with the linen cloths, but apart, wrapped up into one place. Then that other disciple also went in, who came first to the sepulcher: and he saw and believed. For as yet they knew not the scripture, that he must rise again from the dead. (John 20:1-9)

Reflection:

In hindsight, we are tempted to wonder, how could people be so evil as to crucify an innocent man; one who loved, one who taught of love, one who healed with love, one who by His love brought life. How is it such a man of mercy and love could stir the people to such evil violence? It is because they did not understand what they plotted.

Some witnessed His works and heard the Word He preached. Some would comprehend and seek to follow Him, but many preferred to remain blind to what they saw and deaf to what they heard. They could not argue against His wisdom or His works, and so it was that they feared what they could not understand. The Word He brought was that of the glory, grace, mercy, and love of the Father. He encouraged them to love one another, yet, in their ignorance and their failings, they responded instead, with hate.

He lifted not a finger to stop them, for it is by the evil He allowed from them that He revealed what was within their hearts. Blessed are we that all was so, for it was by the obedience of the Son to the Father that a new covenant was formed. It was by His obedience to the Father that death was conquered so that the children of His creation might be forgiven their sins and cleansed of their iniquities. Blessed are those who believe in Him, for it is through Him that salvation is theirs if they so choose.

Though many mocked Him and cheered at His suffering, many also wept at the injustice. How is it, we might wonder, that two people come to see the same event so differently? The answer is found in the lens by which the heart sees. One sees through the lens of the world; a world of pride, selfishness, envy, and greed; while the other sees through the words and works of His love. If we do not believe in the love of God, then, what hope do we have? If we believe the Son of God willingly gave His life so that we might follow Him to His kingdom, where love is shared by all; then, we have eternal hope.

There are those who would question, why should we believe? We were not there to see Him heal the lame, make the deaf hear, heal the afflicted, or make the blind see. We were not there as He brought the dead back to life. We were not there to see even one moment of His life, death, and resurrection. If we did not see, how can we possibly believe? How are we to know whether these stories are any more than myths? Some would argue, just because we can read of such events does not make them true.

If the story ended in those moments, then, we would only have the testimony of those present by which we might decide, but His works did not end upon the cross or within the minds of those who witnessed. With His resurrection came a new beginning. The written scriptures may end with the last word of Revelation, but His Word is eternal and the stories it drives and shares continues within the hearts which are open to Him. From His seat beside the Heavenly Father, He hears and answers the multitude of prayers raised up to Him.

If we look, then, we will see the many ways He works within our lives. If we open our hearts, we may hear His voice within us, seeking to guide us. We may choose to remain deaf. We may choose to remain blind, but He continues to wait patiently and knocks quietly at the door of our heart. It is our choice, then, whether we shall answer, whether we shall let Him in. Let us, then, seek the blessings of His ways and lift our hearts in thanks and praise for the sacrifice made for us and all the generations of His creation. Let us rejoice that as He conquered death, He also opened the gates of heaven so that all who believe in Him may turn from their sin and follow Him to receive the eternal blessings of His love.

Questions for further reflection:

How does the story of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus come to us?

If we did not witness His resurrection, how can we assess its truth?

How does His resurrection open the door to the fullness of faith?

May the peace and blessings of the Lord be with you always,
Prayer Soldier

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